I have to be honest… I’ve felt a tremendous need for introspection over the past week or so on things that have nothing to do with my writing—probably because I’m going through a lot of changes. (Don’t worry, I’ll spare you most of the details.) One way some of my most recent experiences are actually related to my writing, however, is that suddenly I feel more connected to my characters—particularly my heroine.
I remember when I was working on the last couple of scenes in Element 7 during my heavy edits, I felt really emotional about them because, in a way, I was going through some of the same things that my MC (main character) was: heartbreak, confusion, disappointment…
Those are very potent, less-than-desirable experiences, though perhaps going through these things will only serve to make my writing that much more potent.
2012 has been a very dark year for me, actually. (Most will never understand just how dark it truly was for me). And really, it’s only been in the last couple of months that I’ve felt those dark clouds start to roll away. The future—my future—doesn’t look quite as…well, bleak as it once did before. I’d lost a sense of purpose in my life, but lately, I’ve seemed to find some…
A Call to Action
I’m sure many writers know that there’s a moment in every epic “Hero’s Journey” known as the Call to Action (or Call to Adventure). (This is relevant because Element 7 is, essentially, a nontraditional hero’s journey.) Typically, this Call occurs closer to the beginning of a story, but I’m working on a series, and I think my novel actually has two Calls to Action–one near the beginning, and one right at the end.
Well, there’s got to be something to look forward to in the sequel…right? (‘Course, gotta leave readers wanting more. ;))
Anyway, the reason I’m even bringing this up is because, right now, I feel I’m facing my own “Call to Adventure” starting my own interior design business…and, to be honest, it’s a pretty darn scary place to be. If I chicken out, then I won’t have a “story” to live out and tell to others; if I answer the call…
…Well, I’ll kinda have to change.
Fact is I can’t continue to be the person I currently am if I want to get to where I want to go in life. I have to move even more out of my comfort zone than I’ve been doing lately.
Baby steps are great, for a while, but sometimes you just have to take a huge freakin’ leap if you want to get to The Next Level.
You know what I’m sayin’?
Personal (Ironic) Parallels Between Fiction & Reality
So when I first started formulating the basic ideas behind Element 7, I was 19. I’m 24 now. (Yes, that means it’s been over 5 years since I started working on this thing!)
Ironically, my main character, Voi, is also 24, so I’m just now catching up to her. Also, ironically, Voi once made the decision to run her own business at a young age. She’s a bit ahead of me, in some ways, and lately, I haven’t been looking at her as a hero so much as my hero.
Yes, that’s right—I actually look up to a fictional character.
You see, Voi is a lot more outgoing than I am. She’s not afraid to do something risky—like drop out of college to pursue her love of flight and become a stunt flyer then later an entrepreneur. She’s not afraid to make mistakes—or rather, she doesn’t let fear stop her from making them. Also, she’s a bit of a pioneer.
Most entrepreneurs are, I think.
The point is: I kinda admire that about Voi, and it’s only been recently that I’ve been able to relate to her so directly.
It’s kinda neat.
So, as I sit here churning out my last edits before beta reading, I feel that I’m at a special point in my life where I can stop writing/editing from the notes and outdated plans and whatnot and just simply write from the heart.